Police yesterday extended bail period for three Malawi Congress Party (MCP) senior officials, who are facing treason charges, to June 30 this year.
The three are MCP executive member Ulemu Msungama, suspended publicity secretary Jessie Kabwila, who is also member of Parliament (MP) for Salima North and the party’s youth committee leader Peter Chakhwantha, who is also Lilongwe South West MP.
They were arrested in February last year, but have since not been formally charged.
However, when Kabwila and Msungama went to Police Headquarters in Area 30, Lilongwe, to report as per their bail requirement, the bail was extended to June 30 2017.
National Police spokesperson James Kadadzera was not available for comment, but Kabwila confirmed the development.
She expressed concern over the conduct of the police, wondering what the aim of their arrest was when, according to her, there was no proof of any wrongdoing.
“This is the time for us to be working in development activities in our areas, but we are required to be reporting to police on a charge which we have not been told yet. So, if it is taking them this long to tell us our charges then what was the point of chasing us and arresting us as if they have got proof?
“Another thing, as long as a person has an issue hanging on their head, it is disturbing and inconveniencing. For instance today, I was supposed to be in my constituency planting trees because drought has devastated us hugely, but I have failed because I had to go to the police,” Kabwila said in a telephone interview yesterday.
Meanwhile, lawyer representing the trio, Gustave Kaliwo, told a journalist in Lilongwe yesterday that they are at the moment comforted with the fact that the matter is coming up for review on February 14 and they just hope that the State will tell them the reasons for taking so long to formally charge the three.
Police arrested the three in February last year over a WhatsApp discussion that the police initially said was seditious, but later claimed it were treasonous.